After toppling the Spurs in San Antonio for their sixth straight win, the Celtics now head to Oklahoma City for the second night of a back-to-back against strong Western Conference teams. If they can get through this one, they're in the clear — they get to return home for three full days of rest to bask in their winning streak.
But finishing off the road trip on a high note won't be easy — the Celtics will have to get through Kevin Durant and the hot Oklahoma City Thunder first.
When and Where
Friday, Dec. 4, 8 p.m. ET (CSNE)
Ford Center, Oklahoma City, Okla.
Celtics (15-4, 1st place in Atlantic Division)
Thunder (10-8, 4th place in Northwest Division)
Head to Head
Since the Oklahoma City Thunder became the Oklahoma City Thunder, they have yet to beat the Celtics. In two meetings last year, they were humiliated in both — the Celtics won the first battle in OKC in November 96-83, and they took the second in Boston four months later 103-84.
It's never easy to compete in the Western Conference with an inexperienced ballclub, but that appears to be exactly what the Thunder are doing this season. Durant, Russell Westbrook and Jeff Green are all under 24, but they look like exactly the Big Three that OKC needs to compete for a playoff spot out West.
Point guard: Rajon Rondo
Shooting guard: Ray Allen
Small forward: Paul Pierce
Power forward: Kevin Garnett
Center: Kendrick Perkins
Point guard: Russell Westbrook
Shooting guard: Thabo Sefolosha
Small forward: Kevin Durant
Power forward: Jeff Green
Center: Nenad Krstic
The Celtics are 8-1 on the road this season, the best mark in the NBA.
They allow 99.7 points per 100 possessions, third-lowest in the NBA.
Kendrick Perkins' field goal percentage is 64 percent, second-best in the NBA.
Ray Allen is a league-best 94.7 percent from the free-throw line.
Rajon Rondo leads the league with 47 steals.
Paul Pierce averages 25.2 points per game against the Thunder in his career.
Kevin Garnett has 8.6 rebounds per game on the road.
The Thunder are 5-4 at home.
They have 151 steals, seventh-most in the NBA.
Kevin Durant is fourth in the NBA with 27.7 points per game.
Russell Westbrook is sixth in the league with 65 turnovers.
Jeff Green has three double-doubles this season.
Nenad Krstic averages 11.8 points and 7.1 rebounds against the Celtics for his career.
Thabo Sefolosha averages 9.6 points and 6.1 boards at home.
Black and Blue
Glen Davis is nearing his return from a broken thumb.
Tony Allen is on the road to recovery from a right ankle injury. He hopes to play Tuesday against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Nenad Krstic left Wednesday's game against Philadelphia with a sprained left ankle. He is day to day.
Shaun Livingston underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee two weeks ago. He is still missing in action.
Kyle Weaver needs surgery on his left shoulder. He is expected to miss at least four months.
This Date in Celtics History
In 1985, the Celtics run up 130 points on the New Jersey Nets on the road, winning 130-111 for their ninth consecutive win. That streak is snapped two days later at home against the Portland Trail Blazers.
"I don?t feel like it was one of our best games. I think our defense, we were talking and we played some good team ball. Guys made some plays at times and we came out with a win."
–Kendrick Perkins, in Friday's Boston Globe, on the Celtics' win over San Antonio on Thursday night
The Celtics stifled the Spurs.
Boston's road trip has been perfect.
Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins are talking up a storm.
The Thunder struck down the Sixers.
They're ready to rumble with Boston.
Nenad Krstic has a sprained ankle.
Allen Iverson says all the right words.
Ron Artest — role model?
Tim Donaghy's saga goes on.
For years, whether it's been in Seattle or Oklahoma City, called the Sonics or the Thunder, this franchise has been a pushover for the superior Celtics. But no longer. The Thunder's trio of capable young athletes will push the Celtics to the limit, especially a C's team working hard to stay energetic at the end of a long road trip. The C's will have to contain Durant and hold up against a barrage of his young, quick sidekicks if they want to win this one.